My interest in ham radio dates back to my schooldays when I first visited the shack of Cedric GI3IVJ (now CT3FT) and subsequently joined the City of Belfast YMCA Radio Club GI6YM. I studied for my City and Guilds
Radio Amateur Exam while studying for my O levels, attending the night class at the Belfast Technical College under the tutorship of Ian GI3NUM. Most of the other members of the class were mature students and I was one of very few from the class who passed first time around. The next hurdle was the morse test but I was not successful. My hopes of a transmitting licence died and I got down to working to get into university to study medicine. Years later in 1976, after qualifying as a medical doctir I re-joined the scout movement as a leader and applied for my first transmitting licence as GI8MIV to organise a station for Jamboree On The Air (JOTA). I was keen to get on the short wave bands so I took my morse test again and this time passed and was able to apply for my A licence as GI4FUM. I also hold the Irish callsign EI4DJ.
I operate on 2m and 70cm FM and on HF on 80m and 10m. I run a Yaesu FT707 on 80m to an inverted vee half wave dipole. I also run a Sommerkamp FT-7B on 10m to a
Moonraker 10m whip from my car from time to time. I run 100w out from the shack and 50w out from the car. I enjoy making contacts with stations around the world using low power on the 10m band. I have been a member of Ten Ten since March 1978 - my Ten Ten number is 21599. I am a reserve RSGB newsreader for GB2RS on 2m.
My wife Gillian now holds the callsign GI8MIV and my eldest son Paul is GI7EXN. Both are B licensees and can only operate on VHF frequencies. I am the licensee of the club station callsign GI4SIW for Antrim & District Amateur Radio Club and we often use this callsign for a Jamboree On The Air station (GN4SIW) for Antrim and District Scouts. I am the District Commissioner for the district
After 24 years as a licensed radio ham I am finding a renewed interest in the hobby.